AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Hyundai is giving away a custom 2013 Santa Fe “Rock n Roller” as part of a contest piggybacking on the 55th Grammys.
Even with high gas prices, Americans are choosing fuel effiecient compacts with conventional gas engines over pricier gas-electric hybrids. Sales have steadily increased with the Hyundai Elantra, Ford Focus and Chevrolet Cruze while hybrids are showing little activity.
Hybrid sales in the U.S peaked in July,2009 peaking at 3.6% and last month sales were down to 1.6% however production cuts and the Japan disaster are playing a factor.
“Even with the fuel savings, it doesn’t make sense to buy a hybrid” for many buyers, says Power Senior Manager Mike Omotoso of J.D Power and Associates. “This year, we had $4 gas (in many cities) but we saw the introduction of compacts that get 40 mpg. All of these cars are considerably cheaper than hybrids.”
The nations best-selling hybrid is the Toyota Prius averaging 50 mpg, while the Ford Fusion hybrid averages 38.5 mpg. However, all Elantras and some Focus and Honda Civic models are rated at 40 mpg or more on the highway.
New conventionally powered cars use various strategies to increase gas mileage to compete at hybrid levels- without the batteries and electric motors that can increase the price of the car by $6,000, according to J.D Power and Associates.
[Source: USA Today]
Having just introduced the new Accent/Verna at the Beijing Auto Show last week, Hyundai has now unveiled the 2011 Elantra at the Busan Auto Show in South Korea. Called the Avante in its home-market of Korea, it certainly takes after the styling of the new 2011 Sonata, which works well to give a sporty and sophisticated look to the compact sedan, which in past iterations never was very handsome.
Powering the new Elantra is a 1.6-liter gasoline direct-injection (GDI) 4-cylinder that makes 138-hp and 123 ft-lbs of torque. When combined with a six-speed automatic transmission Hyundai claims this new powerplant will deliver roughly a 10 percent improvement in fuel economy.
There’s no word on the new Elantra’s launch date in North America, but we’re likely to see a debut at the LA Auto Show at the end of this year with sales starting either later 2010 or early 2011.
GALLERY: 2011 Hyundai Elantra / Avante
Official release after the jump:
Several years ago Hyundai announced its plan to be the most fuel-efficient automaker in the U.S. The news was met with much skepticism. But not that long afterward and an impressive new lineup of award-winning vehicles and the Korean automaker has already met its goal and is well on the way to achieving the 2016 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standard of 35.5 mpg early.
The news comes as the EPA releases its Light-Duty Automotive Technology and Fuel Economy Trends Report for 2009, which rates Hyundai first at an average of 30.1 mpg. This also makes Hyundai the only automaker with an average of 30 mpg or higher. In second place is Honda at 29.7 mpg, third belongs to Volkswagen at 29.6 mpg, Toyota is fourth at 29.4 mpg and Kia (also owned by Hyundai) is fifth at 28.0 mpg.
Possibly even more impressive is that Hyundai has done all this without having a single diesel or hybrid in its lineup. Hyundai does, however, plan to introduce its first hybrid based on the all-new 2011 Sonata, next year. New turbochared engines and direct-injection engines are also planned.
“Our thoughtful application of cost-effective, fuel-efficient technologies has helped us achieve our goal of leading the industry in fuel economy ahead of schedule,” said Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik. “Now we hope to extend that leadership with the launch of our new direct injection, turbocharging and lithium-polymer hybrid technologies, all of which will be a part of the 2011 Sonata lineup launching early next year.”
Official release after the jump:
It may be a whole half year away but already some details are emerging about the cars expected to debut at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. And the first vehicle is the all-new 2011 Hyundai Sonata.
Recently the Sonata was spied testing in Dubai and it gave us a pretty good indication of what the vehicle will look like. Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik has said that it is intended to be a bold design that will help set the car apart from its successful Japanese competitors from Honda and Toyota. In fact, the 2011 Sonata is supposed to have a trendy four-door coupe profile.
There is no word on engine choices, but it’s not hard to guess that a four-cylinder engine will be standard with a V6 optional. High-technology items like direct-injection and a six-speed automatic transmission are also possibilities.
Additionally, Hyundai is expected to release a hybrid version of the 2011 Sonata, although that particular model is likely due out later.
[Photo Credit: Assayyarat]